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Anti-Semitism in France Update

There are too many troubling things to keep up with

Adam Chandler
February 06, 2013
The Old Port of Marseille in Marseille, France. (Julian Finney/Getty Images)
The Old Port of Marseille in Marseille, France. (Julian Finney/Getty Images)

In what’s becoming a horrifying trend, anti-Semitic incidents in France have ballooned to the point that they require their own news round ups. Earlier today, it was reported that a man wearing a Star of David was robbed and attacked twice out of a train station in Marseille.

Two men on a scooter approached the victim on Monday outside Saint-Charles, a busy train station and shopping mall, and one tore the golden chain from his neck, the La Provence daily reported. They called him a “dirty Jew” before fleeing on the scooter, with one of the alleged assailants carrying the pendant.

A group of young men nearby then approached and hurled anti-Semitic insults at the victim before stealing an MP3 player and 100 euros, according to Metro, another daily paper. They also reportedly hit the victim.

How this for a consolation line?

Though France has seen a 45 percent increase in anti-Semitic incidents in the eight months since last March, when an Islamist fanatic killed four Jews in Toulouse, Marseille has seen relatively few such attacks.

Speaking of Toulouse, a woman wielding a knife was arrested out the Ohr HaTorah school–the site of last year’s shooting–after threatened a 16-year-old boy who was walking out of the school.

According to Direct Matin, a news website and daily newspaper, the woman shouted anti-Semitic slogans and “appeared mentally unstable.”

And just for an added bonus, a French labor relations court has reportedly agreed to hear the case of designer John Galliano, drunk spouter of anti-Semitic invective, against his former employers, Christian Dior, which fired him after his rant was filmed and released. Galliano is suing for almost $19 million.

Adam Chandler was previously a staff writer at Tablet. His work has appeared in the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the Atlantic, Slate, Esquire, New York, and elsewhere. He tweets @allmychandler.